VFX-friendly paint package gets new watercolour media, improved render engine and foliage painting
The Project Dogwaffle team has released Howler 11.1, the latest update to its VFX-friendly paint tool – or, as developer Dan Ritchie describes it, its ‘(un) natural paint program’.
The update adds a lot of new features to Puppy Ray, the built-in renderer, updates to foliage painting, new watercolour media, and a more Photoshop-like colour picker.
New features in Puppy Ray for rendering water and fog
The largest set of changes are to Puppy Ray GPU, Howler’s GPU-accelerated ray tracing engine, which gets support for depth attenuation, underwater scattering and caustics when rendering water.
There is also a new ground fog feature for rendering atmospheric haze; and the implenentation of bump maps now takes account of fog depth distance “so farther objects can have some texture”.
New options for painting foliage and modelling clouds
In the foliage toolset, the L-systems plugin, used to generate simple plant-like branching forms, has been updated and brought into the core software.
The foliage painting tool also has “finer control over shading parameters”; while the particle modelling system, used for modelling clouds, can now use animated sprites as brushes.
Other features include new watercolour presets and UI changes
Other changes include new watercolor media in the natural media paint tools; a new, more-Photoshop-like square default colour picker, and new UI styles for sliders.
You find see a full list of new features via the link below.
Pricing and availability
Howler 11.1 is available for Windows only. The MSRP is $49.99, but at the time of posting, the new release is available at a launch discount.